A boy considering the antonyms of a miracle

Shedrack Opeyemi Akanbi

By Shedrack Opeyemi Akanbi

—for the sibling I should have carried around the neighborhood on my shoulders.

You stay at the gate of this poem as chrysanthemums lining the entrance of a home. I mean you can’t sit at dinner tonight, like always. I am spluttering the thick pus of bruised hope that fills my mouth. This is to say, my mouth is failing again at the eloquence of a metaphor to describe your presence. I mean, the absence of you that has become a cloven tongue of water, washing through the muster-seeded cohesion of my palms clasped towards heaven. All I am saying is that, I am a jukebox of lamentations because you have remained a name that has refused to own a body.
Whatever holds a name becomes.
this name, knitted to be the second pair of a holiday pyjamas by the tongue of our mother, atrophies daily. & at the end of every year, your name loses a bit of flavour on my palate, because it becomes tiring to hold a conversation with echoes.
Whatever holds a name becomes
Something we carry till our memories fail.


Shedrack Opeyemi Akanbi (He/Him/His) is a Nigerian, believer, and dreamer. He studied History and International Studies at the University of Ilorin. His writings appear in The Roadrunner Review, Kalahari Review, Salamander Ink, Olongo Africa, and elsewhere. He was shortlisted for the 2020 Eriata Oribhabor Prize for Poetry (EOPP), and won the 2021 PIN Poetically Written Prose Contest. His short story ‘Mr. Tunde’s Moments’ was second runner-up in The Bolaji Abdullahi Prize for Literature, 2021. He reads fiction for CRAFT Literary and Little Patuxent Review.
Twitter: @ShedrackAkanbi
Instagram: Fly_away_home